Watching too much television could shorten your life, a study suggests. Research carried out in Australia, and published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, showed that every hour of TV watched after the age of 25 may shorten lifespan by 22 minutes.
According to one of the report's authors, Dr Lennert Veerman, from the School of Population Health at the University of Queensland, it puts long hours spent in front of the box “in the same ballpark as smoking and obesity”. “While smoking rates are declining, watching TV is not, which has implications at a population level,” he said.
Last year, another Australian study found an hour of TV a day led to an 8% increase in the risk of premature death.
Too much sitting, as distinct from too little exercise, is associated with higher mortality risk, particularly from cardiovascular disease. “Logically we know that physical activity is good for health and so it's not so strange that the reverse is not so good,” said Veerman.
The report also showed that a person who watches an average of six hours of TV a day would live on average 4.8 years less than someone who watches none.
(Guardian News Service)